When Friendship Turns Deadly

What signs should you know to avoid the ‘Green-Eyed Monster’


By Dorcas Asiedu-Sekyere, Spartan Contributor

Friendship and jealousy. 

This is the story of Shanquella Robinson. 

Sadly, it is a True Crime story of a woman who went to Mexico and didn’t return alive. 

Even though it happened well over a month ago, neither law enforcement authorities nor reporters are sure about exactly what happened.

Shanquella’s so-called “friends” say one thing but published reports and family members tell a different tale.

Somewhere in these stories lies The Truth. But until it is determined what occurred, it appears jealousy may have triumphed over justice.

This sad situation has led me to question something all of us, at times, struggle to determine. Who are our friends? 


Beware of Jealousy, Envy

Two persistent and substantial threats to protecting a friendship are jealousy and envy. 

Jealousy takes root in friendships from the seeds of low self-esteem, low self-confidence, or the sense of feeling threatened by another friend because of what they have or can do. 

Friends who express envy tend to not be happy with their friend’s accomplishments. 

The green-eyed monster, a phrase coined by William Shakespeare, is no joke. It refers to jealousy and the extent it can cause chaos. 

Many of us have had a friend who has shown signs of jealousy or resentment. 

In Shanquella’s case, it is believed that this tragedy stemmed from jealousy and resentment from her friends. 


More and more videos

Though it is small consolation, because Shanquella’s case has gone viral, perhaps it has allowed more people to come together to help in the pursuit of the justice her family deserves. 

According to CNN, “A video circulating online in recent weeks appears to show a physical altercation inside a room between Robinson and another person.” That video surfaced on Twitter from a random source. Still, it clearly shows the victim and her friends in it. The FBI and police are still investigating its source.

The video has led many to believe that the vacation in Mexico was a set-up for so-called friends to allegedly hurt Shanquella, with the intention of malice and permanent harm.

It doesn’t help that these individuals quickly flew back to America after Shanquella’s fatal end. 

In an article from The Washington Post article about this same incident, Shanquella’s mother said, “Even though a month has passed, I don’t know anything about how my daughter died.” 

Shanquella’s friends reportedly told her family that she died of alcohol poisoning, but according to autopsy reports, she died of a broken spinal cord. 

The fact that her friends allegedly went out of their way to end the woman’s life and possibly lie about it, is despicable. 

More videos that have surfaced online. They look like evidence of a planned attack.  

Mexican authorities reportedly are in the process of issuing warrants. Still, nothing concrete has happened.

For the moment, there is substantial speculation that Shanquella’s accomplishments at the age of 25 led to feelings of jealousy and envy among those around her.


Losing friends is part of life

Sadly, what this incident has done is remind me that success, no matter how big or small, may change how others see you. Therefore, it is critical to surround yourself with people who empower you, then people who want to continue to bring you down and tamper with your dreams and goals. Not paying attention to whom you call your friend, can cost you your life.

As we grow, year-to-year and grade-to-grade, we lose friends. 

But also, as we grow, we make new friends. 

The most important thing is to know who our friends are. 

Just because we call someone our friend doesn’t make them our actual friend. 

One-sided friendships are a thing. And Shanquella’s friendship with these possible green-eyed monsters definitely seemed one-sided. 

But how can I know a friendship is one-sided? 

Some signs that a relationship is one-sided can surface when you begin to develop feelings of loneliness and isolation, or you don’t feel well supported by your friends.

The fear that takes hold inside that you can’t rely on this person for encouragement, but they can claim your time, your joy is another sign that things have become one-sided. 

In that moment you begin to question the balance within your friendship is likely the beginning of the end. 

Does your friend “accidentally” or intentionally embarrass you? 

Do they sabotage your steps toward success? 

Do they belittle your aspirations? 

What we can learn from Shanquella’s tragedy is that it’s okay to grow apart and make new friends. If you don’t feel like your friends truly care about you, then that is a major red flag. We should always pay attention to those red flags, because one day they can save our lives.